1999 Nissan Skyline ER34 – East Coaster of the Day
You’re probably not alone in not understanding why a pretty plain-looking Nissan is getting so much attention, although the round taillights and rear end are quite distinctive.
Among the ornate classic cars hailing from as far back as the 1940s through the 1970s, the 1999 Nissan Skyline looks so ‘normal’.
But the right-hand drive Japanese import has a certain cachet with the younger crowd. And that’s exactly what has gathered around the Skyline in the middle of the parking lot.
The kids on bikes and scooters want the owner, Mike Williams, to rev the engine. They want to hear it squeal.
Mike tells us the 1999 Skyline ended up at auction. Apparently, the original buyer had it imported then abandoned the purchase without paying the import duty.
Mike, a retired member of the Canadian military, bought the four-door sedan. He intends to put a turbocharger on the engine, which is a 2.5-litre straight-6 four-stroke RB engine with an output of 197 horsepower and 188 lb-ft of torque.
Of course, he will also put in a manual transmission. That seems like a given. Brakes have been upgraded, too.
We admire the sharp-looking wheels and Mike says he tracked them down while in Dubai. He’s had the car for just over a year.
The Skyline was first built in 1957 by Prince Motor Company, which merged with Nissan Motor Company in 1967. The model has been in continuous production in Japan since then. The 1960 Skyline Sport model was designed by renowned Italian designer, Giovanni Michelotti.
The Skyline became one of Japan’s most desirable cars and certainly qualifies as a classic there.
In the mid-1960s, the brand entered the racing fray with a GT Skyline.
Mike’s import is a 10th generation Nissan Skyline, built from 1998 until 2002. The 11th generation brought an engine change, from a straight-six to a V6. Finally, the car would be imported into the U.S. by Nissan’s luxury brand, Infiniti, and sold as the Infiniti G35.
The Skyline nameplate continues in Japan as a luxury model and also gave birth to the Z-line revival in the form of the 2003 350Z and the performance sports car, the GT-R.
Thanks to its legendary racing heritage, its popularity in the tuner crowd and street racing culture plus appearances in video games and movies, like the Universal Studios Fast and Furious franchise, the Skyline has made its way into the youth culture of North America.
Ah, that explains that crowd of teenagers gathered around Mike’s Skyline, begging to hear the high-pitched chatter of the engine.